Wednesday, 27 June 2007

A Very Pugsley Mountain Mayhem

Blimey...what a weekend that was! the 10th Mountain Mayhem, Britains premier 24hr MTB race.....

I entered solo and decided to do it on the Pug. Rain had made the course sticky all week but weather was OK on the day of the race and I thought all was going to be OK.

Got sorted out in my race kit on the morning of the race, new shirt to Advertise the up coming Rassay Rumble 10 hour enduro in Scotland in September....and off the gun went at 2pm on Saturday the 23rd June. The traditional le mans running start wasn't the ordeal I thought it was and i jogged around somewhere near the back with the other solo slackers. On the bike and off up the hill.

The course was cool and traction good with my usual 15/12 psi combo. It was a bit sticky but the Pug gripped well.

I was going Ok for a few laps. Paul Howard (not riding for a change) was Pit bitching for me, Jenn Hopkins and Lorraine Staley..and was doing a great job of handing up bottles and gels. 3 laps in and I paused at the 24hr DJ's booth for a beer (cheers to Seb, the Jennys and the Diproses!). Was happy and riding a steady pace and making most of the climbs. Then despite the Assos MAL I started getting sore down below. Think it was due to how hot it was, sweating off the cream...and also the water splash grit. But after about 6 laps it was pretty awful. Had a change of kit and lubed up with Savlon. This was ok for another couple of laps but then just couldn't sit on my saddle anymore. Decided to stop, cream up and rst it for a while...but got cold in the solo tent and retired....POO!! I am no good at this self motivation stuff!! And my ARSE was killing me!..... a biot of sleep then got up in the am. It had pissed down all night and the course was horrendous mud. I decided I'd go out and try and do 2 more laps to make it up to double figures...but only had time for 1....the course was that bad. Even with Pug grip I was all over the place..front wheel sliding on the slick mud...dropped down to 6 psi but it was no good. Everyone was having the same problem......apart from the guys on 1.5 psudo cyclocross tyres.......

BUT...ace weekend...good drink..good mates...nice riding...and LOTS of photos on the PUG :o)

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

SSUK/Bristol BikeFest 2007

Took the Pug plus a friends Voodoo Dambala to Bristol at the weekend for the Bristol Bike fest and the UK Single Speed champs. Great weekend with hot weather and lovely dry, bumpy and rocky/rooty trails. Partnered up for the 12 hour enduro on singlespeeds (used the Voodoo) on the Saturday and we WON!! (Deano and I) by a whole lap. Was a great feeling and the first time in 21 years of mountain binking that I'd won any race!!!

I ended up doing 4 laps of the course on the Pugsley and 6 on the Voodoo. Was good to mix between the two, with the Pug being comfier and the Voodoo being faster.

Sunday saw the SSUK, with traditional beer/riding/racing/arsing about that entails. Was great to meet up with everyone and some great prizes were gievn out to anyone that didn't actually win the races ;0)

Rode the Pug and did a couple of laps but was battered from the previous days racing and overheating in the hot weather. George Budd won the lads race (and I think I made him laugh as he overtook me saying..."on your right" and I replied with..."on your right?? What do you think this is..a race??" ).

Jenn Hopkins won the ladies race for the 5th time in a row...and by an impressive margin.

A great weekend had by all.

Friday, 1 June 2007

Pink King...and WI

Fitted a couple of new parts today, picked up a pink Chris King headset and a White industries 20t freewheel off the STW classifieds. It makes that lovely click and the King is right pretty! few more pics too....enjoy...

Wednesday, 16 May 2007

North Downs

Well....took her to the North Downs on Sunday. It chucked it down all morning so this gave me a chance to try out the Endomorphs in the wet.

I was sticking with my 15 psi and the bike rode well on the wet sandy trails. Had a couple or rear wheel spins when climbing a steep wet fire road, but nothing a letting a couple of psi out of the rear end didn't sort.

Did the usual loops over near Peaslake and BKB, and it coped with the conditions and the tight and twisty very well. I think I'm getting use to her handling. The crowd of people at the Peaslake store were aparently eyeing the bike up as we rode past (I didn't notice..too busy chatting) according to my riding buddy Lisa. got chatting to a group of young lads at the bottom on BKB, they were loving the trails and asked about the bike....I think I might have sold another one for you Surly!!!

I love this bike...;0)

Monday, 7 May 2007

The First BIG test....

Dyfi Enduro 2007, May bank holiday, Mac, West Wales...

So...I bought a Surly Pugsley..and everyone of course asked WHY???!!!! Well, I tried one at Mountain Mayhem in 2006 and was immediately hooked, purely because it is so ODD!! Eventually sourced all the parts and managed a good deal bringing the frame/wheels in from the States (especially with the dollar being so weak ATM).

Decided to spec it singlespeed. Has an 18t freewheel on one wheel and a 20t sprocket on the other for a choice of gears. Raceface finishing kit (although I've now swapped the bars out for the excellent Surly 1x1 flat bars) XT disc brakes, erm and not much else.

Got it built pretty quickly and tried it on a few night rides over in Brighton. Key with the PUG is getting the tyre pressures right. Too hard and you are slamming off stuff, too soft and the front wheel dips and dives and makes steering INTERESTING!.....just right and it rides just like a BIKE! Quickly decided that the 18t was ok for flat terrain (it worked well when I raced it at the Thetford NPS enduro in April, see picture above ;0)). Eventually I've settled on the 20t at the back giving a 29er type gear (the wheels are 29er ish anyway....what with the FAT tyres). So, 32/20 it is.

The first big test of being able to ride this thing as a normal, everyday bike and not just as a snow/sand bike was going to be the Dyfi enduro in May. I had my theory that with the tyres right it could be an amazing bike over most terrain. It's challenge to prove this was 60km of Welsh mountains, long fireroad climbs and fast, slate covered descents....ace!

Well...the bike was fantasic. It is superb downhill, Just rolls and rolls and doesn't want to stop. It'll bash straight over rocks and roots and drifts like nothing else on loose, gravel corners. I finally settled on about 12-15 PSI in the tyres. This seems to work best for me. The bike is a bit slow on the climbs due to the drag, but....i'm getting fitter ;0)

More to come when it's done some more rides...but, dare I say it...this might be a keeper ;0)